Book Review: Norfolk & Western Ry Steam Pictorial

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Tue Jan 6 15:38:42 EST 2015

Hey, fellow N&W steam fans! I just received, and thoroughly enjoyed reading, my copy of a new book on one of my favorite subjects........the N&W steam fleet. 
This is a new book called Norfolk & Western Railway, Steam Pictorial. It's written by Benjamin L. Bernhart and published by Outer Station Project. It's an horizontal format hardback with 80 pages presenting the gorgeous B&W photography of Benjamin T. Young. The front and rear covers are color shots of a Y6 in action and "THE J" #611. There is no paper dust jacket which is more and more common with book publishing today. I would have preferred having one. The subjects of the book are the last groups of N&W steamers used: A, J, K, M, S & Y. The earliest photo being a nice shot of Y-2 2-8-8-2 #1704 taken in 1949. The most recent photo is of J 4-8-4 #611 with a passenger train taken during the Streamliners At Spencer event held last May at the North Carolina Transportation Museum.  
The majority of the shots are 1955-59 era pictures and are very well composed and printed. Many were taken on late 1950's fan trips which allowed access to scenes and locations otherwise rarely seen. The majority of the photos were snapped in the yards and engine terminal areas of Roanoke and Crewe but other locations are presented. I was really happy to find that I had only seen a couple of these photos prior to purchasing this must-have book. 
For me this book is a special treat with several new photos of K-1 4-8-2's which are my particular favorite and seem to have been ignored and overshadowed by the Big Three: A, J & Y classes. There are enough photos of the other classes to please any fan of N&W's steam in the last decade. 
There are a few very minor mistakes for those looking for that sort of thing but the captions and writing provide ample description and information to please anyone. I highly recommend this book to all N&W fans and to fans of big steam locomotives and it's a bargain at $29.95!.
Printed in the USA, too!
Roger HuberDeer Creek Locomotive Works
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